So, if you have read the previous 2 installments of this series — Get a Blog and Start/Build Your Email List — then you are ready for the next step. Now that you have a place to release your new media and have started a mailing list to promote your new media, it is time to create some new media!
Too many people I talk to look upon this as a challenging task. “Where am I going to find the time to create all this content?” The truth is, you don’t have to make more time to create your content. In most cases, you are already creating content every day. The sad part is, you are probably throwing away this content because you don’t recognize it when you see it.
Every person, every store, every charity, every restaurant, every business creates content every day…or should be. You have a unique message you want and need to communicate to your customers. You goal is to integrate new media into your work and business so that you take advantage of every opportunity to create new content.
Here are some examples from a variety of businesses:
Did you just receive a new product, new product line, an enhancement to an existing product or a promotional video from a vendor? Look for a way to make a short video, a piece of audio or a blog post about this product. Look for opportunities to interview manufacturers about their products. Have your staff create videos about products they really like. Your customers are there to buy your products. Give them as much information as you can to make their purchasing decisions easier. Even more, using your existing staff in your new media productions brings a personal feeling to them. Your customers will see the same people online and in the store and feel a closer relationship with your business.
Many restaurants work on a very seasonal menu. Peaches are in season one week, raspberries the next, strawberries another. Fall calls for comfort food and summer for lighter fare. This gives you a ready-made schedule and reason for new media. Show your customers how you are developing a new seasonal menu. Show them the special ways you are using the seasonal product. Celebrate the change of seasons with menu items, entertainment ideas, party information and more. You can also produce mini-series of cooking classes and recipes, showing some “behind-the-scenes” action that everyone loves.
One of the biggest goals of any charity is out-reach — telling potential donors what you do and why it needs to be done. If you are a medical charity, I would guess you have regular panel discussions and speakers that come to present to your staff and donors. Make a point of recording these events. While you may have 10-20 people at the in-house discussion, you have a potential audience of thousands on the Internet. If you have influential visitors to your offices, record an interview with them that can be used on your web site or sent out as a podcast.
If you have a yearly event, capture as much media as possible during your next event. Done right, you will have enough content to power a weekly or monthly podcast. This show then becomes a regular promotion for the next yearly event. Instead of making your PR push a few months before your regular event, you now have a series of regular promotions throughout the year leading up to the event. Your goal here is to be make the yearly event a culmination of a year-long event that you have been fueling using your new media productions. Ideally, by the time you open up ticket sales for your event, the demand will be so high that you will sell out almost immediately. Then you repeat the process, gathering more media at this event to fuel your show for another year.
Build your personal brand
Many of us are in the business of providing information and advice. Too often, we wait until customers come to us for information instead of proactively reaching out to them. In the case of one financial planner, the current mortgage and stock market crises has led to frightened customers rushing to their office to inquire about their portfolios. Imagine how you might allay fears by providing a regular informational update to your clients. When customers are clamoring for information, new media is a great way to provide it.
Providing this information also goes a long way towards building your own brand as an expert in your field. Your audience might begin with your clients, but it can quickly grow to include others who might eventually become your clients. It could even raise your profile enough to bring traditional media outlets like newspapers and television to come seeking your insight.
Content surrounds you and your business. You only need to reach out and capture it when it occurs. Starting a new media program isn’t about creating information out of whole cloth. It is about sharing what you already have and know. Start capturing your content and building your New Media future today.